Holiday Gift Ideas for Travelers

It’s the start of the holiday shopping season, and the time of year where gift idea lists are popping up online everywhere. I created this one with the solo traveler in mind – all the selections are budget-friendly and designed to make traveling (and travel days) easier. They’re also great for gift exchanges and stocking stuffers!

For Packing

Packing cubes: A game changer in making everything fit into a carry-on! Get the ones with a mesh window that lets you see which clothes you have inside, that way you don’t have to unzip every one of them when looking for your favorite sweater. Consider a set that comes with a laundry bag.

Luggage trackers: Apple’s AirTags are a favorite because they leverage Apple’s massive network to track down a lost bag or backpack, and they’re incredible at pinpointing an item’s precise location.

Toiletry bag:  A must-have to keep all your products together in one handy place. Get one with multiple compartments and a hook that will hang smoothly from a towel bar to keep everything easily accessible. Also saves time when going through security.

Tide travel packets:  Every time I take a trip without some sort of laundry detergent, I regret it. But these hotel sink-ready packets allow you to wash all the essentials, which means you don’t have to pack as much and can save space for souvenirs.

For Plane and Train Rides

Noise canceling headphones: You can’t turn down the noise from the engines or control the conversations of your fellow passengers, but the right pair of noise-cancelling headphones can make all the difference in your ability to enjoy your ride. They are designed to reduce low-pitched droning sounds—in other words, exactly the kind of noise encountered on a plane, or even a train.

Phone mount:  Watch your favorite TV shows and movies from your own device without holding your phone the entire time. This handy mount clamps to the seat-back tray table, allowing you to attach your phone and stream hands-free.

Under eye patches: Let’s be honest, no one looks or feels fresh after a flight. Under eye patches are perfect for hydrating, brightening, and tightening, leaving you temporarily refreshed.

For Electronics

Tech bag: Every organized traveler needs a way to store their cords and tech support items. Look for one with many pockets and loops that will fit any size cord and offer a safe place to store AirPods, portable chargers, and remote work accessories like a mouse or Wi-Fi extender.

Universal adapter with USB ports: A necessity for international travel. Adapters change the plug configuration so our electrical devices can be plugged in to wall outlets in foreign countries. Select one that also converts the charge so that you can use your non-dual voltage items.

Power bank (portable charger):  At some point, your constantly on-the-go friend or family member will require some extra juice. A portable charger ensures they have it when they need it most.

For Destination Prep

Digital travel guides: The modern version of the traditional travel guidebook, a digital guide leverages technology and includes information about sites, accommodations, restaurants, transportation, and fun activities in the area. They can be interactive and often include maps, historical and cultural facts, and tips to easily get around in your destination.

Trip planners: Trip planner apps are specifically designed to help travelers organize their days. They typically offer features that allow travelers to find transit information and view upcoming departure times by destination, stop, or station. They show distance between locations, estimated travel times, and can even recommend attractions to stop and see.  They are a great way to create a schedule and plan the logistics of your trip day-to-day.

Notebooks or journals: Perfect for jotting down ideas, an itinerary, or travel memories. Not all travel journals need to be embellished works of art. The best ones are simple. Look for one with lined or grid-dot paper that fits easily into a tote, purse, or backpack.

For Post-Travel Memories

Calendars and vintage travel posters: I love nostalgic destination posters and images that reflect a bygone era of travel. They also make an excellent addition to any vision board as motivation for a trip to come.

Polaroid pocket printer: Now that we all walk around with high-quality cameras in our phones, fewer travel photos actually make it to print. This pocket-size printer from Polaroid spits out vibrant 2″x3″ photos, so you can post your memories proudly (outside of social media), create your own art, or share with a friend.